Henry Cavill’s 10 Best Performances – S

Henry Cavill's best roles include Mission Impossible, Witcher and Man of Steel

Having nailed down various iconic roles across both movies and television over the years, Henry Cavill is one of the most widely-beloved actors out there. Cavill has never shied away from embracing his nerdy side and his love of video games, which has only served to make people love him more. His passion for gaming ultimately led to him taking on Geralt of Rivia in Netflix’s The Witcher series back in 2019.

Henry Cavill’s time with The Witcher is coming to an end after the third season. Despite the controversial departure, Cavill has delivered exceptional performances as Geralt, but they are by no means the only good showings of his career.

Captain Syverson (Sand Castle)

It may not be a big-hitting movie, but Sand Castle landed on Netflix back in 2017. Nicholas Hoult and Henry Cavill led a talented cast. Cavill played Captain Syverson, the leader of a Special Forces unit in Baqubah.

Cavill cuts a more grizzled and rough figure than usual as Syverson, but he plays the role of a leader to perfection with his believable military authority and leadership. Sand Castle made little lasting impact beyond its intense action, but Cavill can still claim that he gave it his all in one of his most notable acting performances.

9Albert Mondego (The Count Of Monte Cristo)

At 17 years old, playing Albert Mondego in The Count of Monte Cristo was only Henry Cavill’s second credited gig. Albert was barely in the movie, yet had an integral part as the son of Jim Caviezel’s Edmond Dantes. However, Cavill still made an impact with an emotional performance that displayed immense maturity and intelligence.

Cavill has since said that he will always be grateful for this role and Kevin Reynolds for giving him a proper start in the industry while he was still at school. Albert may have been a minor role, but it will always be there in Cavill’s best and most important performances.

8Charles Brandon (The Tudors)

Other than The Witcher, Henry Cavill has only ever been in one other multi-episode television role. He played Charles Brandon in The Tudors. Cavill’s Brandon was present throughout the show’s four seasons because he was one of King Henry’s closest friends and allies, even though they had a strained relationship.

Cavill excelled as Brandon thanks to expert creative guidance from creator Michael Hirst, as the pair explored the character and really brought him to life. The Tudors had a strong cast of familiar faces that went on to great things, and Cavill was certainly one of them. The Tudors ran alongside Cavill’s movie career, from Stardust (2007) to Immortals (2011) until he eventually landed the role of Superman in 2013.

7Theseus (Immortals)

In 2011, Immortals was Henry Cavill’s moment to break out as a lead in an action movie. It was by no means one of the best fantasy action films, but Cavill shone where it mattered as Theseus. Cavill reportedly refused makeup and visual effects to fabricate his physique and sculpted that himself.

Cavill looked the part as Theseus, a man chosen by the gods to fight the forces of evil. The role was actually Cavill’s first real experience with a green screen project. This set him in good stead for future roles in movies that used entire green screen rooms, and he will always have the part of Theseus to thank for that.

6Sherlock Holmes (Enola Holmes)

The Enola Holmes movies boasted great performances. Millie Bobby Brown gave a great turn as the titular budding detective, as did Henry Cavill when playing Enola’s brother, Sherlock Holmes. Sherlock’s reputation and status loom large over Enola as she tries to prove her smarts on a regular basis, but he learns to care for and respect his sister.

Cavill’s Sherlock is a very different Detective Sherlock Holmes to other iterations, but he plays the role to perfection. He captures the classic Sherlock Holmes image of the perfect detective, but with an extra warmth and vulnerability that helps him slot into a supporting role. The Enola Holmes movies may not be as highly-rated as the Robert Downey Jr. Sherlock Holmes movies or the Sherlock series, but Cavill’s performances remain a highlight.

5Humphrey (Stardust)

Stardust is a romantic fantasy movie from 2007 with a serious cult following. Still, those fans would be forgiven for forgetting that Henry Cavill appeared as Humphrey, Victoria’s boyfriend. That isn’t a disservice to Cavill’s performance; he played an annoying and vain rival extremely well, it was just a minor role.

Between his appearances in Tristan + Isolde (2006) and Stardust (2007), Cavill’s career started picking up momentum. This exposure ultimately sent him closer to the likes of The TudorsImmortals, and Man of Steel. Regardless of how minor the part was, Stardust will always be an integral fantasy role that came before his standout performance as Geralt in The Witcher.

4Napoleon Solo (The Man From U.N.C.L.E.)

Napoleon Solo in The Man From U.N.C.L.E. was Henry Cavill’s first role after playing Superman in Man of Steel. While The Man From U.N.C.L.E. was another action-packed thrill ride, it delved into the spy world rather than superheroes and allowed Cavill to show off his range.

Cavill’s performance in The Man From U.N.C.L.E. was a highlight in what fans now consider an underwhelming movie by Guy Ritchie’s standards. Cavill brought a coolness and suave charm to Solo and still looked the part in every single fight scene. Cavill’s chemistry with Alicia Vikander and Armie Hammer was a highlight that kept the movie engaging, even in the slower parts.

3Superman (Man Of Steel)

Many actors have played Superman over the years, but Henry Cavill stands out as the best of modern times. He may not directly compare to Christopher Reeve in terms of the overall package, but Cavill looked the part as Superman and brought serious gravitas to the role. Man of Steel (2013) was the first of five credited appearances for Cavill as Superman.

While none of those five movies were especially impressive, other than Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Cavill was consistently great in his performances. Henry Cavill is not in James Gunn’s plans for the future of Superman, but his work during that decade-long period will never be forgotten.

2August Walker (Mission Impossible – Fallout)

Mission Impossible – Fallout is the highest-rated movie of the franchise, at least until the reviews come in for the upcoming first part of Dead Reckoning in July 2023. Dead Reckoning will surpass Fallout as the series’ longest movie, but Fallout is tough to beat as an overall spectacle.

While Mission Impossible‘s stunts and high-octane action are always the main attraction, Fallout also impressed with its performances, including Henry Cavill as August Walker. Cavill’s Walker was an uneasy ally and then direct enemy for Ethan Hunt and his crew, and Cavill played the role of dangerous assassin expertly. Walker’s demise ultimately ruled out a return to the series for Cavill, although this series is called “Mission Impossible.”

1Geralt (The Witcher)

Despite the controversy and general sadness surrounding Henry Cavill’s departure from The Witcher, Geralt of Rivia will always be one of his greatest roles and performances. Fueled by a love for The Witcher games and franchise, Cavill deemed it an honor to play Geralt and thrived in the role.

Geralt is notoriously closed off from showing emotion, but Cavill has excelled in showing his tough personality and capturing his rare moments of vulnerability. Cavill really immersed himself in the role, and in doing all of his own stunts, he cemented himself as Geralt. Liam Hemsworth is now set to take over the role, but Henry Cavill will always be remembered as the first to truly bring Geralt to life.

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